A couple of weeks ago I ran a test with WebPagetest that was designed to quantify how much a CDN improves performance for users that are far from your origin. Unfortunately, the test indicated that there was no material performance benefit to having a CDN in place. This conclusion sparked a lively discussion in the comments and on Google+, with the overwhelming suggestion being that Real User Monitoring data was necessary to draw a firm conclusion about the impact of CDNs on performance. To gather this data I turned to the Insight product and its “tagging” feature.
Before I get into the nitty-gritty details I’ll give you the punch line: the test with real users confirmed the results from the synthetic one, showing no major performance improvement due to the use of a CDN. Continue reading
In part 1 of this 2-part series we used a comic strip to depict Python programmers and web operations folk working together to figure out how to deploy some scientific computing to an e-commerce site. Joking aside, let’s describe exactly what were were trying to accomplish, and how we did it. Continue reading
Python is my favorite computer language for data science, but it is a poorly standardized beast when it comes to packaging, deployment, web operations, etc. There are plenty of people who are deploying Python code to the web effectively, but especially in the data science area, there is no equivalent of the LAMP stack that you can just plug in and start coding against. We have a way, among other possible ways, of solving these problems, that we think people might find useful, and I am going to describe our methods in a couple of blog posts. The first one will tell the story as a comic strip. The next one will have the code and instructions. Continue reading